The Elements of Timeless Storytelling with Donald Maass Master Class (May)

May 07, 2018 12:00 AM EDT to May 18, 2018 11:45 PM EDT

Online Registration

How to adapt and apply to contemporary fiction the elements that make the classics great.

Don Maass, literary agent and author, will again be offering a master class for WFWA in March and May 2018. You can sign up for only one of the two.

In this workshop, Donald's goal is to teach us how to learn and apply lessons from the classics. The goal is to counter-act our tendency as writers to write “about” our characters and “around” their story—to write pretty—and to rediscover the force of knowing narrators, driving desires, riddles and plights, impossible tasks, “enchanted” lands, magical and surprising secondary characters.

We tend to imagine that what makes our favorite literature great is relegated to the past. Not so. Timeless storytelling is for our times, too. 

Presented by New York literary agent and teacher Donald Maass, author of Writing the Breakout Novel, Writing the Breakout Novel Workbook, The Emotional Craft of Fiction, The Fire in Fiction and Writing 21st Century Fiction

This is a master level, hands-on workshop for writers who consider themselves advanced in their craft, with several writing assignments spread over two weeks. Please see below for a description of Master Class to determine whether you qualify.

Registration opens in April 16 at 12pm EST/ 9am PST.

$60 Class fee. For WFWA Members only

Only those willing to share their work with others and provide critical feedback to help insure their peers’ success should register for this class. You will be expected to set aside time to participate most days during the class (expect at least an hour a day, at times more). Those who wish to obtain the lessons only (in MS Word format) will be able to purchase them for a nominal fee after the class ends.

By participating in this workshop, you agree to allow your assignments to be viewed by other WFWA members, including but not limited to registrants in this workshop.

What does a Master Class Level Mean?

This class is designed for experienced fiction writers. Not necessarily published writers, but those with several manuscripts under their belts. It is not about basics of plot construction, scene structure, character building or dialogue.

The workshop writing assignments and Donald's comments on those do not address fiction fundamentals, but aim at deepening and enhancing (adding to) manuscripts that already have in place a story intent/style/genre, plot structure, principle characters and their arcs.

As a writer you can ask yourself:

 1) Do I feel that I’m still mastering novel-writing basics? 

2) Am I still getting to know my main character and searching for a plot? 

3) Am I unsure of my genre, wondering about choices of style, or just not sure what I want to say through the story? 

Writers who answer “yes” to these questions may feel that the workshop lessons and assignments are complicating things and making their story choices more confusing.

Writers who can answer “no” to the above questions should find that the workshop honors their novels’ basic intents, but pushes them deeper into characters, plot possibilities, and in other ways enhances and draws out of a work in progress more of its potential. 

*Dates subject to change. Details are forthcoming.